Don’t take a chance on a fire trap scooter

It looks fine ' but faulty hoverboards have sparked a national alert
It looks fine ' but faulty hoverboards have sparked a national alert

West Lothian Council has backed a national warning about the dangers posed by fire trap “hoverboards” brought in from abroad.

None are currently known to have been bought locally, but concerns remain high about gizmos which could literally burst into flames.

Thousands of the self-balancing scooters have already been blocked at UK ports, with more than 15,000 seized of over 17,000 examined.

Some makes come supplied with plugs that aren’t designed for use in the UK - and because they don’t have fuses are at risk of overheating, posing a potentially lethal threat to safety.

West Lothian Council has made it clear it shares the concerns of authorities across the country, as even although the risk of local purchases seems low, hoverboards are classic Christmas present material – but laden with danger.

The scooters already intercepted were found at UK ports, but internet buys are still a concern – particularly as they’re unlikely to come with any kind of health and safety advice.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service has highlighted safety issues with plugs, cabling, chargers and batteries, and with cut-off switches meant to prevent the devices overheating.

Scottish Fire and Rescue Service Assistant Chief Officer Lewis Ramsay said anyone who assumes the flawed equipment won’t lead to a fire could be making a fatal mistake.

He said: “A fire in the home can be absolutely devastating, and sadly there is often a peak in house fires over the winter holiday period.

“Electrical items are one of the factors we know contribute to this rise and if people do have hoverboards that don’t meet the required standards then they are putting themselves and others in danger.”

There’s more about unsafe hoverboards at www.tradingstandards.uk/home.cfm.